What does it mean if I own or rent property in a historic district?
Local historic districts are designed to preserve the fabric of historic neighborhoods by protecting the architectural and historic legacy of neighborhoods, giving residents a sense of place in time. In fact, local historic districts are not really designed to preserve “individual” structures but collectively to preserve the fabric/feel of the entire neighborhood. Proposed changes to the exterior of buildings in a historic district must first be reviewed by the Salisbury Historic District Commission (SHDC).
Where are the historic districts in Salisbury?
There are three historic districts within the Salisbury corporate limits; the Newtown Historic District, the Camden Historic District, and the Downtown Historic District. Maps identifying the boundaries are also available on this website. What is in-kind repair/replacement vs. using different materials? In-kind simply means to repair/replace with the exact item; i.e. replacing an old wooden tongue and groove porch floor with new tongue and groove lumber of the same dimensions, size, reveal, etc. would be in-kind and SHDC approval would not be required. However, using 5/4 pressure treated deck boards in this example would not be permitted without SHDC approval.
How do I apply?
You must complete an application, submit photographs of the structure and surrounding properties, supply scaled drawings, and provide material samples. Applications are available in the Infrastructure and Development office, located at 125 N. Division Street, Room 202, Salisbury, MD. Currently there is a $50 fee for a hearing with the SHDC.
What happens after the after the application is submitted?
Once your application is accepted as complete it will be processed and you will be notified of a hearing date and time. You or someone on your behalf must present your request/proposal to the SHDC. What are the possible outcomes of the hearing? The SHDC can approve your application as submitted, approve your application with modifications, deny your application, or recommend you withdraw your application and return with additional information. If your application is denied, you have the right to appeal the SHDC’s decision. Should you choose to appeal their decision, you must file your appeal with the Wicomico County Circuit Court within 30 days from the date of the Commissions decision.
What if I violate the SHDC requirements?
If you violate the historic ordinance provisions you will be guilty of a municipal infraction and subject to fines of up to $500.00 for each day the violation occurs.
What if a Code Enforcement Officer has ordered the corrections?
If your attempt to comply with the corrective action letter involves repairs that are not in-kind, you must notify the reporting officer of your plan and request an extension. Extensions will only be provided for two (2) consecutive 30 day periods.
To whom can I direct my questions?
If you have questions regarding SHDC approval or how to comply with a corrective letter, please contact the Infrastructure and Development office at (410) 548-3170. Available Tax Credits The Heritage Preservation Tax Credit Programs, administered by the Maryland Historical Trust, provides Maryland income tax credit equal to 20% of the qualified capital costs expended in the rehabilitation of a certified heritage structure. Anyone interested in this program must first make application before any renovations are started. For more information on this benefit, please call (410) 514-7620, or at www.marylandhistoricaltrust.net.